Suspended jail sentence for Kilburn man, 84, who killed his nephew from Harlesden

Ezekiel McCarthy fatally stabbed Desbert Welsh after mistaking him for a burglar

A Kilburn octogenarian who stabbed his nephew to death after mistaking him for a burglar walked free from court today.

Ezekiel McCarthy, 84, of Knightleas Court in Brondesbury Park, was said to be drunk and confused when he plunged a knife into 50-year-old Desbert Welsh on November 13 last year.

Mr Welsh, who lived in West Ella Road, Harlesden, had been drinking and celebrating his uncle’s birthday.

Last month at the Old Bailey, Mr McCarthy, who is one of the oldest men to appear in the dock, denied murder and his plea to a manslaughter charge was accepted by the prosecution.


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Today (Tuesday) he was sentenced to nine months jail suspended for two years, with two years supervision.

The court had previously heard McCarthy was delirious at the time of the killing and was also showing signs of dementia.

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He had become paranoid he was going be targeted and had hidden a knife under his bed to protect himself.

After he stabbed Mr Welsh, McCarthy knocked on a neighbour’s home seeking help.

He told her: “This bloody man. I don’t know how he got in my room.”

Mr Welsh died three days later from a stab wound which pierced his liver and caused complications.

Alex Milne QC, defending, said the death had had an impact on the whole family.

McCarthy could not believe what he had done and could not associate the victim with his nephew.

Mr Milne said: “He is destroyed. He is mortified. He could not in his wildest dreams harm his nephew.”

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